October 6, 2013
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Journal Editor Larri Jo Starkey toured Murfreesboro, Tennessee, from a high to capture the scope of the 2013 Nutrena East Novice Championship, with its 1,550-plus entries. (Journal photo)
The 2013 Nutrena East AQHA Novice Championship finished with a burst of speed October 6 at the Tennessee Miller Coliseum in Murfreesboro, Tennessee.
More than 1,550 entries filled the Tennessee Miller Coliseum beginning October 1. Novices filled the grounds as well, bringing along their horses, their friends, their trailers, their golf carts, their bicycles and their Justin boots, while eager volunteers from the Middle Tennessee State University equine sciences program sported bright blue shirts as they helped with tasks from opening gates to loading trailers. Exhibitors and their friends enjoyed a party sponsored by AQHA Corporate Partner Tractor Supply Co. before the serious competition began.
Many of the exhibitors stopped in Murfreesboro for the world’s largest championship show exclusively for Novices on their way to the All American Quarter Horse Congress in Columbus, Ohio. Participants must qualify for the Novice Championships nationally or through a state or provincial affiliate to compete in classes representing halter, English and western disciplines.
AQHA President Johne Dobbs of Champaign, Illinois, was on hand for most of the week of competition to present awards to Novice youth and Novice amateur exhibitors. Class champions received neck wreaths for their horses as they rode their victory laps, along with a top-10 patch and bronze, silver and gold trophies.
AQHA Corporate Partner Farnam sponsored the all-around awards, with exhibitors earning Montana Silversmiths spurs, WeatherBeeta blanket and a Professional’s Choice saddle pad.
Reserve all-around exhibitors received a trophy and a Professional’s Choice pad, while bronze all-around exhibitors received a clear globe trophy and Professional’s Choice Sports Medicine boots.
High-point English and western exhibitors also were recognized, as were winners in the halter champion of champions classes. High-point riders received Professional’s Choice pads, and the halter champion of champions winners received a WeatherBeeta freestyle blanket.
Halter Champion of Champions were crowned, as well, and those lucky two include:
The event's title sponsor Nutrena provided a lucky exhibitor bucket for each class, full of goodies, along with offering free hay testing all week at the show.
Vendors filled the coliseum offering everything a horse person could possibly need or want, and throughout the week, exhibitors measured themselves to order qualifiers jackets.
A sister show, the SmartPak West AQHA Novice Championship Show, began October 2 and concludes October 6 as well.